The fourth book in Baum's Oz series, Dorothy returns to lands of magic and fantasy with her cousin Zeb, kitten Eureka, and a cab-horse named Jim. They encounter vegetable people living under the world, and Dorothy is reunited with the Wizard of Oz when he floats down in his hot air balloon. They later are aided by invisible people in the Valley of Voe, and must escape several unfriendly mythical creatures to return to Oz. Baum's vivid imagination and creativity are readily apparent in this adventurous work, for he combines wonderful characters with an entertaining plot in a land at once familiar and full of enigmatic possibility.
The train from 'Frisco was very late. It should have arrived at Hugson's siding at midnight, but it was already five o'clock and the gray dawn was breaking in the east when the little train slowly rumbled up to the open shed that served for the station–house. As it came to a stop the conductor called out in a loud voice: "Hugson's Siding!" At once a little girl rose from her seat and walked to the door of the car, carrying a wicker suit–case in one hand and a round bird–cage covered up with newspapers in the other, while a parasol was tucked under her arm. The conductor helped her off the car and then the engineer started his train again, so that it puffed and groaned and moved slowly away up the track. The reason he was so late was because all through the night there were times when the solid earth shook and trembled under him, and the engineer was afraid that at any moment the rails might spread apart and an accident happen to his passengers. So he moved the cars slowly and with caution.